The Arizona Diamondbacks (often shortened as the D-Backs) are an American professional baseball franchise based in Phoenix, Arizona and compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member of the National League (NL) West division.
The D-Backs are a comparatively new entry to the world of pro-sport as the franchise only began as an expansion team in 1998. The Diamondbacks have won one World Series championship (in 2001), becoming the fastest expansion team in the Major Leagues to win a championship, doing it in only the fourth season since the franchise's inception. In fact since their debut, the Diamondbacks have won five National League West titles, one National League Championship pennant, and the 2001 World Series.
The team have played their home games at what is now Chase Field and was formerly known as Bank One Ballpark. The ballpark was renamed in 2005, as a result of Bank One Corporation's merger with JPMorgan Chase & Co.
2001 was of course a special year for the World Series, coming in the wake of the atrocities of 9/11. The Diamondbacks were playing against the famed New York Yankees and the general sentiment was that the experienced team would want to win it for their beleaguered city and for some time it seemed that it would be so but in the seventh game the new kids on the block finally made it and sealed their place in baseball history.
Two giants of the team who have had their numbers retired are outfielder Louis Gonzalez and left-handed pitcher Randy Johnson. A Cuban-American, Gonzalez spent his best years with the Arizona Diamondbacks and was one of the most popular players in the team’s history. He delivered the game-winning hit in Game 7 of the 2001 World Series off Mariano Rivera which gave the Diamondbacks their historic first World Series championship. In that year he also won the Silver Slugger award and was Home Run Derby Champion.
Randy Johnson pitched for the Diamondbacks from 1999-2004 and again from 2007-2008. His 303 career victories rank as the fifth-most by a lefthander in major league history, while his 4,875 strikeouts place him second of all-time and are the most by a lefthander. He also played a key role in the World Series victory where he was named co-MVP. One of the tallest players in major league history at 6 feet 10 inches (2.08 m) and a ten-time All-Star, Johnson was celebrated for having one of the most dominant fastballs in the game; he regularly approached – and occasionally exceeded – 100 miles per hour (160 km/h) during his prime. He also threw a hard, biting slider. . He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2015, which was his first year of eligibility, and is the first member of the Hall to be depicted in a Diamondbacks uniform on his plaque.
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